This week on social media, Church leaders emphasized the importance of preparing for general conference, and shared stories about hiking and family history.
On Sept. 30, Sister Lisa Harkness, first counselor in the Primary general presidency, shared a story about attending general conference when she was in sixth grade. There were no tickets during that time, so everyone stood in a long line and waited to be let in.
When she and her family took their seats, a large pillar blocked her view of the pulpit.
“At first I was very disappointed. But as the Church leaders began to speak, I realized that I could perfectly hear every word from every speaker, including the prophet,” Sister Harkness wrote. “My testimony grew that day because I learned that I did not have to see the prophet to understand his message and feel the Savior’s love.”
Although it may not be possible to see the Prophet and other Church leaders as hoped, Sister Harkness promised that “the Spirit will teach you the lessons suited for you, regardless of how you experience general conference.”
Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles extended an invitation to prepare for general conference in a video on Sept. 30. He offered three specific suggestions to help listeners prepare.
“I promise you that you will get answers you need as you prepare yourself for this important time,” Elder Andersen said.
In a Sept. 27 post, Sister Reyna Isabel Aburto, second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, wrote about how the words found in Helaman 5:12 have been in her mind as she prepares for general conference.
“My hope is that we can all prepare our hearts and minds so our eyes can see and our ears can hear what our Savior would have us learn during general conference so we can go and act accordingly,” she said.
On Sept. 29, Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham posted on Facebook about general conference and the opportunity it provides to be united spiritually.
“As I think of this great spiritual gathering, I can picture your faces and feel the strength of your testimonies of the gospel of Jesus Christ,” she wrote. “I can hardly wait to be with you!”
Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon shared on Sept. 25 four lessons from one of her girls’ camp leaders that have stayed with her throughout her life.
“Sister Newbold’s influence has lasted a lifetime for me,” she said. “What lessons did your Young Women leaders teach you?”
In a Sept. 30 post, Sister Cordon wrote about how she was inspired by a young woman who wrote down 150 ways that she sees the Savior in other people as part of the “My 150” challenge. As part of her general conference preparation, Sister Cordon has been looking for evidence of Christ in the people around her.
“As I’ve thought about this idea more, I’ve realized that this is one of the ways that I ‘hear Him’ in my life,” she wrote. “While our current world may be full of confusion and chaos, we can still find evidence of the Savior’s hand all around us.”
On Sept. 28, President Russell M. Nelson shared a Tweet about developing faith through life’s trials.
Sister Michelle Craig, first counselor in the general Young Women presidency, shared an insight she gained from a recent hike in a post on Sept. 27.
“The trail was uphill, and having never been on this hike before we didn’t know when we would reach our desired destination — we just kept climbing,” she said. “The reward was indeed worth the effort when we came to a beautiful little lake we had never seen before.”
She explained how when enduring trials, “the pace is not as important as is our effort — that we keep trying to put one foot in front of the other.”
“The Lord loves effort — and we should as well!” she wrote.
In a post on Sept. 28, Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles posted a series of old family photos. As Elder and Sister Uchtdorf have been organizing family photos and documents, they realized they are the only living people who can identify the people and places in some of the photos.
“We recognized the value of keeping records so that our children and their posterity have access to these memories too,” Elder Uchtdorf said.
As he looks at the examples of his ancestors, he gains “emotional and spiritual strength from their legacy of faith, their courage and perseverance, their love and goodness.”
“It helps me to look at the uncertainties and challenges of our day with a sure hope and peaceful confidence that in the end, we too can rely on the Savior, His gospel, and His Church to prevail,” he wrote.